Monday, October 04, 2010

Why the Mormons, the Minnesota Family Council and Maggie Gallagher are WRONG

Even as the epidemic of suicide among LGBT youth continues to dominate the headlines, some of those responsible for the climate of homophobia, marginalization and dehumanization that drives young people to believe their lives are not worth living are back at it.

The Human Rights Campaign points to Boyd K. Packer -- the second-highest Mormon leader -- who said in an October 3rd address [captured on YouTube] that "same-sex attraction is "impure and unnatural" and can be overcome, and that same-sex unions are morally wrong and "against God's law and nature."
Take that you LGBT teen struggling to figure out who you were created to be and how you're going to live a life the includes integrity, love and relationship! Being told that the deepest yearnings of your heart are against God's law AND nature are the seeds of self-loathing that lead to self-destruction.
Meanwhile, The Minnesota Independent reports that the Minnesota Family Council's Tom Prichard says the real issue is “homosexual indoctrination,” not anti-gay bullying -- and that "the students are dead because they adopted an “unhealthy lifestyle."
Thirteen and fifteen year olds are not "adopting a lifestyle" they're trying to have a life! They're trying to figure out who they are, who God created them to be and what on earth to do with this confusing bunch of sexual feelings that they're trying to get a handle on. They need role models for healthy relationships -- not judgment and the message that they're condemned to a life of loneliness, isolation and despair.
And finally, NOM's Maggie Gallagher weighed in to say, "I do not think the absence of gay marriage is the cause of these tragedies or its presence will resolve them."

And here's why she's wrong. Here's where the PRESENCE of gay marriage -- or more arguably of "marriage equality" -- could in fact be exactly the sign of hope and health ... of a future worth living for and aspiring to ... that could rescue these children from the message that they are inherently unnatural, abnormal and broken.

The visible witness of gay and lesbian couples given equal respect through the equal protection of civil marriage also gives to LGBT youth the model of healthy relationships we want all our children to know and understand they can strive to live into as they grow and mature into the adults God created them to be.

What Gallagher names as "the absence of gay marriage" is in fact a symptom of the failure of this nation to live up those values we pledge allegiance to when we proclaim that we are a nation of "liberty and justice for all." And the rhetoric of the "protect marriage" movement -- of which she is arguably a chief spokesperson -- has been all about fomenting fear and then denying their part in fanning the flames of homophobia.

And they can't have it both ways. They can't produce videos that warn of "The Gathering Storm" and then deny that they're fomenting fear. And they can't call our children unhealthy and unnatural and then deny their responsibility for the self-loathing that leads to depression, despair and self-destruction.

It's time for it to stop. When Jesus said, "Let the children come to me" (Matthew 19:14) he meant all of them. Not just the straight ones.

So let's get our voices out there -- wherever and whenever we can. And let's let them know that Maggie, the MFC and the Mormons are WRONG -- that Jesus loves ALL the little children of the world -- and that we're here for them as they grow up and grow into exactly the fabulous grown ups God created them to be.

Go. Do it. Now!


Dan Beavers said...

AMEN! Silence equals death. We must fight this epidemic of hate. Many years ago I was an 18 year old kid locked in a homophobic religion and contemplating ending it all. It took a long time for me embrace the person God created me to be. We must save our children and give them love and hope.

Anonymous said...

Can you just imagine?

"Jesus loves the little straight children,
all the straight children of the world.
Red or yellow, black and white,
all the straight ones are precious in his sight.
Jesus loves the little straight children of the world."

Unknown said...

I have been struggling lately with finding the words (and the strength to say them outloud) to combat the growing "language of hate" that is prevalent in today's society. The recent publicized spat of teen suicides has left me outraged and brings back memories of my youth and my own struggles to find acceptance. Your words are so obvious...more needs to hear them. More of us need the strength to say them. It is becoming all to obvious that silence does kill.